More than 60 families of students who attend Las Cruces Public Schools received free iPads for their participation in educational courses offered over the summer through the district’s Division of Equity, Innovation and Social Justice. The four-day, 15-hour Tech Goes Home courses were offered to  families, and took place at four different schools, including Doña Ana Elementary School, Central Elementary School, Picacho Middle School and CrossRoads.

Parents and students from Las Cruces Public Schools learn how to use iPads in the Tech Goes Home program at Central Elementary School. The program, which provided free iPads to Spanish-speaking parents, was made possible through a grant from New Mexico State University’s College of Education and supported by Doña Ana Community College’s ENLACE program.

Parents and students from Las Cruces Public Schools learn how to use iPads in the Tech Goes Home program at Central Elementary School. The program, which provided free iPads to Spanish-speaking parents, was made possible through a grant from New Mexico State University’s College of Education and supported by Doña Ana Community College’s ENLACE program.

Parents attended nightly sessions with their children, where they learned how to operate the iPad and begin using it to assist in their child’s education. They learned to access and navigate the LCPS website, ParentVue, and the websites for the New Mexico Public Education Department and the U.S. Department of Education. Additionally, the parents were taught to access community engagement resources, including City of Las Cruces websites for the public library, parks and recreation and museums, and how to use apps like Facetime and Skype.

Families of students from Las Cruces Public Schools participate in the Tech Goes Home program at Central Elementary school. The program, which provided free iPads to Spanish-speaking parents, was made possible through a grant from New Mexico State University’s College of Education and supported by Doña Ana Community College’s ENLACE program.

Families of students from Las Cruces Public Schools participate in the Tech Goes Home program at Central Elementary school. The program, which provided free iPads to Spanish-speaking parents, was made possible through a grant from New Mexico State University’s College of Education and supported by Doña Ana Community College’s ENLACE program.

The iPads were provided through a grant secured by Dr. Anita Hernandez, the Don and Sarrah Kidd Endowed Chair in Literacy in NMSU’s College of Education. The courses were taught by Aldo Lopez, LCPS Family and Community Support Coordinator. All of the classes were taught in Spanish.

Each class concluded with a graduation ceremony, where parents received their iPads. Each graduation was attended by LCPS Superintendent Greg Ewing and representatives of the district’s administration team.

Las Cruces Public Schools Superintendent Greg Ewing poses with parents who completed the Tech Goes Home program at Central Elementary School. At the ceremony, which took place on Thursday, Aug. 9, each participating family received a free iPad, provided through a grant from New Mexico State University’s College of Education and supported by Doña Ana Community College’s ENLACE program.

Las Cruces Public Schools Superintendent Greg Ewing poses with parents who completed the Tech Goes Home program at Central Elementary School. At the ceremony, which took place on Thursday, Aug. 9, each participating family received a free iPad, provided through a grant from New Mexico State University’s College of Education and supported by Doña Ana Community College’s ENLACE program.

“Providing opportunities like this one for parents is what Las Cruces Public Schools is all about,” Ewing said. “Many parents have limited access to technology, or lack formal training in its use. These courses will enable these parents to become more engaged in their children’s education. We are grateful to New Mexico State University for allowing us to provide this training to parents across the district.”

The Southern New Mexico ENLACE program at Doña Ana Community College facilitated the purchase of the iPads, cases and keyboards, and provided instructional support for the trainings.

— Damien Willis, LCPS Director of Communications, 575-527-5811, dwillis@lcps.net